Graves Co. School Dist. names new preschool consultant - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Graves Co. School Dist. names new preschool consultant

(Source: Graves County Schools) (Source: Graves County Schools)

The Graves County School District has selected Melissa Bazzell to serve as its preschool consultant.

She will work with teachers and teaching assistants to prepare preschool students for kindergarten.

Bazzell earned both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in interdisciplinary childhood education as well as a master’s degree in special education, all from Murray State University.

She knows of where she speaks because, “I worked for Graves County for seven years,” she said recently. “I started at the Head Start/preschool center for three years and then taught kindergarten for four years. I left in 2013 to open my own preschool, ‘The Kidstruction Zone,’ in Mayfield. It’s a private program. Once it was up and running, I was ready to come back to the school system. I still own it, but have hired a director for it.”

Besides working inside, the district with all seven elementary schools, she also expects to become a community liaison for early childhood education.

“I want to reach out to families not yet in the school system and to build a bridge to help students get ready to enter school,” she said.

Bazzell said preschool always has been state-funded and federally-funded. She hopes to garner more funding in order to reach more children.

“All of our teachers do a great job,” she explained. “Unfortunately, we currently can’t take all children into the program. The child and family must meet certain qualification in terms of income, disabilities, and so forth. When space is available, we also can offer slots on a tuition basis for other children. The benefits of preschool are tremendous. So much of the research proves that those kids in these programs go on to excel throughout their school years. It’s because of being in an early childhood structure, getting used to  instruction, and even just the simple social experience all helps.”

Melissa Bazzell has been married to her husband, Jesse Bazzell, for the past 12 years. They have a 9-year-old boy, Kolt; a 6-year-old daughter, Avyn; and are expecting another child in December.

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